Euclid Crash reassembles with fresh songs and renewed power-pop momentum after years off

Euclid Crash with Bp Tiger and Ali Harter
9 p.m. Saturday
113 N. Crawford, Norman
$7, $9 under 21

It’s like starting over again for Euclid Crash. A popular metro act seven years ago, the band fell apart as life intervened, but the musicians have rediscovered the thread and picked up where they left off, with new resolve and, most importantly, a batch of new songs.

The group reformed last August for a reunion show to benefit bassist Dave Klein and his wife, Kelli, who were adopting a child. Singer Tory Ayers thought it’d be a great way to raise some money to defray the couple’s expenses and help herself return to making music after a divorce.

“We practiced up for three to four months and did the show and had a great time. We packed the house and raised a lot of money for that and just loved it,” Ayers said. “We said, ‘Why don’t we keep this going?’ But we knew we wanted to throw out a lot of that old material. That was our goal. So we stopped, wrote new stuff and then we started again.”

Time has a way of healing old wounds. Older, wiser and more dedicated to the project, the members are simply in a different place now then when they quit six years ago. What hasn’t changed, however, is the energy they once shared.

“We’re not in 10 bands each anymore, which helps us to focus a little more. We all know this is something we want to do. You think you want to start a band, so you start a band, and you don’t even care what it sounds like as long as you’re playing,” Ayers said. “We started rehearsing for that reunion show ” we did it just for the hell of it ” but we all looked at each other like, ‘Yeah, we forgot: We do good together.'”

That Euclid Crash should begin again in such an unplanned, off-the-cuff manner is fitting. The group got its start in 2000, when Ayers overheard a couple of acquaintances talking about starting a band.

“I said, ‘I’ll be your singer.’ They didn’t take me seriously,” she said, but a few months later, they approached her with some music and asked her to give it a shot.

Drawing on acts like The Rentals, Weezer and The Get Up Kids, Euclid Crash created energetic power-pop, and quickly attracted a fervid fan base. But after a few years, its members began to feel a little stifled, both by their sound and their audience, which was mostly teenagers frequenting the all-ages shows at The Green Door, which has since become The Conservatory.

“We were all stuck in that genre, wondering, ‘How do we start writing songs that escalate to a new level?’ And our crowd was very young, which is fine, but we wanted to bump up a level too and not just have our scene be teenyboppers,” Ayers said.

Things were further complicated when longtime bassist/guitarist Mike Kennerty and short-time drummer Chris Gaylor departed to join The All-American Rejects. Euclid Crash struggled to find replacements for a while (which is how Klein joined the band), and eventually lost momentum. The group soldiered on a few months before calling it quits.

There were never any hard feelings between any of the members or Kennerty, who remains a close friend. In fact, he originally was slated to record the group’s eight-song comeback release, before it became apparent that his touring and time commitments would make that difficult. The band plans to release the album digitally through Nice People Records in June, while keeping its options open to larger label interests.

“We changed our sound and our influences, so the stuff we’re producing now is still in that same genre, but it’s not quite as ” I don’t want to say immature ” but just not quite as young-sounding to me,” Ayers said.

Euclid Crash plans to tour this summer, largely in weekend gigs, because guitarists Ryan Costello and Matt Owsley “have big-boy jobs they can’t leave for long,” Ayers said.

In addition to the the songs on the forthcoming album, the band has written written five or six more, and the musicians are enjoying the ease with which material has been coming together for them. Ayers said it’s like a new lease on life.

“It is very exciting for me, and I think I can speak for everyone on that,” she said. “We each had other projects that we were in still at the time we started this, and they all fell by the wayside because we wanted to focus on this.” “Chris Parker

Chris Parker

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